Meet the Team
Dedicated to providing near real-time satellite products
Director of GINA
Associate Research Professor
(Snow, Ice, and Permafrost Group at the Geophysical Institute)
I study the Arctic environment, from the ground and space, with instruments and computers. Throughout my career in the atmospheric and snow sciences, a central theme has been the utilization of an incredible array of data available from ground to space to study our Arctic environment. As an early career researcher, I focused on atmospheric radiation model development and intercomparisons with ground-based measurements from a DOE ARM facility on the North Slope of Alaska. I still continue developing successive generations of rapid radiative transfer models (RRTMGP) at UAF, two decades later. Over the past few years, I have pursued new research topics, including the study of snow-cover characteristics and albedo, as well as precipitation measurement techniques, on the North Slope of Alaska with Dr. Matthew Sturm of the SIP group. In 2020, I had the great fortune also to become the Director of GINA, where I am charged with ensuring rapid delivery of direct broadcast data and products from polar-orbiting satellite to forecasting partners and communities across Alaska. I have worked in industry and academia, and I have been self-employed, all while pursuing my science interests. My career path has been anything but traditional, but I wouldn’t have it any other way.
Research Programmer -UAF Undergrad
Hunter is an undergraduate student at UAF majoring in Physics and Computer Science. His main area of study has been space plasmas but is learning a lot about the Arctic while at GINA. He helps with special programming and research-related projects, with his primary goals being retrieving and handling satellite-retrieved snow data. He was born and raised in Alaska, really enjoys being outdoors, especially with his dogs, and likes to play the piano.
Carl is a meteorologist working for GINA as a satellite liaison, developer, and trainer. He previously worked for the National Weather Service for nearly 40 years as a forecaster and Science Operations Officer. This experience provides insight into the satellite needs of operational weather forecasters in Alaska, with a focus on the development of tools and training that assists in the transition from research to operations.
Natural Resources & GIS Technician
After graduating from UC Berkeley with a B.S. in Forestry & Natural Resources and a minor in Geospatial Information Systems, Elizabeth worked a variety of jobs in Northern California before coming to Fairbanks to work on Interior Alaska’s Forest Inventory & Analysis measurements programs. With past experience working in the timber industry, natural resource consulting, and geospatial research, Elizabeth is interested in utilizing geospatial programs to do further research on natural resource systems.
Geospatial Data Analyst
Chris holds a B.S. in Natural Resources Management and a M.S in Geosciences from the University of Alaska Fairbanks. His thesis research focused on how remote sensing techniques can improve fire fuel and burn severity maps to better understand and predict fire behavior in the Alaska boreal forest. Chris is interested in employing remote sensing techniques to help solve natural resource and natural hazard challenges faced by local communities by generating high quality products that can be used to help overcome these challenges.
Greg Wirth is GINA’s lead systems administrator, responsible for support and maintenance of near real-time operational systems. Greg makes sure data passes through each processing computer seamlessly, every day of the year.
Jeremiah Dabney is an employee of the Research Computing Systems group at the Geophysical Institute, and he specializes in Linux system administration. Jeremiah assists GINA with our near real-time processing stack, ensuring data products are delivered quickly to Alaska’s operations and research community.
Pete Hickman is an expert GIS practitioner who has worked as a GIS project & team manager, consultant, and trainer. Pete is fluent using a wide variety of geospatial data management and analysis tools across many operating systems, as well as scripting tool development and process automation. As an ESRI certified trainer from 2003 until ESRI ended their Certified Training Program in 2016, Pete has trained hundreds, if not thousands, of Alaska’s GIS end-users over these years. During his 13 years with GINA, Pete has authored successful proposals to many local and state agencies. He has worked as a data manager for the Statewide Digital Mapping Initiative, and as the lead GIS data manager for the Susitna-Watana Hydroelectric Study, curating geospatial data from 16 consulting firms doing work over three years of the study. Recently, Pete has been working in partnership with AKDOT to assist with development of and validation of Low Distortion Projections for Alaska, urban stormwater modeling, and sUAS data processing using SfM techniques. Pete currently works at GeoNorth Information Systems.
Charlie Parr works at the intersection of snow and geospatial science to create knowledge that enhances understanding of the Arctic. He is a veteran of several snowmobile science expeditions spanning thousands of miles in the Brooks Range and seeks to use that field experience of snow processes and properties to enhance the satellite snow remote sensing efforts at GINA.